Super Eagles forward Victor Moses has stated that he hopes to cap off 2017 by winning the BBC African Footballer of the Year award.Moses is one of five players shortlisted for the 2017 award.
He is also in the running for the 2017 CAF African Footballer of the Year award.
The other players in the running for the BBC award are Egypt and Liverpool forward Mohamed Salah, Naby Keita of Guinea and RB Leipzig, Senegal and Liverpool’s Sadio Mane and Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang of Gabon and Borrusia Dortmund.
In an interview on Chelsea’s official website, Moses who is currently recuperating from injury, gave reasons why he was nominated, helping Chelsea win the Premier League title and also Nigeria’s qualification for next year’s World Cup.
“I am very proud and delighted,” Moses told Chelseafc.com. “It’s been a great year for me so far. We won the league, we got to the FA Cup final. I really enjoyed the season last year and I’m very happy with how it went. I want to continue in that way.
“It would be great to win an award and be the best in Africa. It would mean a lot to me. It is something I would keep for the rest of my life, and it would be like a dream come true. We will see the outcome!
“I must have done well! (on why he got nominated). I have worked so hard to be among the nominees and I guess they saw that. I played a vital part in our league win, and I am pleased with the way things have been going recently.”
On his highlights for Chelsea last season, the former Crystal Palace and Wigan Athletic forward said: “Individually it was scoring the winning goal against Spurs in a derby game, but overall it was winning the league. Lifting the trophy was one of the happiest days of my life, I was buzzing.
“Getting into the team was great for me. I had been on loan three times and I came back stronger which is what I wanted to do. We have a manager here who gives everyone an opportunity to go out and express themselves, and that’s what he did with me. He believes in me and he gives me a lot of confidence to go out and enjoy my football.
“Yeah that does make me quite proud. When I first started playing in that position not everyone knew I had the ability to play there, but the manager talked to me, advised me and encouraged me to do the best I can in that position. I took it in my stride.
“I had to change my natural game a lot! I am used to it now, but I had to adapt defensively and offensively. I knew I was good going forward but I really worked hard on the defensive side of things, because when you play in a position like that you have to be aware defensively.
“I think I have improved a lot, and the manager has helped me do with that.”
And on his role in helping Nigeria qualify for next year’s World Cup and also their chances in Russia, Moses said: “It’s been great. A couple of years ago I didn’t play enough games for Nigeria because of injury, but this year has been an amazing year. In the first game in the World Cup qualifiers against Algeria I scored twice which was very good, and helped us get the three points.
“I’ve been playing further forward for Nigeria, in my natural position. I like to take the ball and attack defenders, but defensively I help out my full-back, too.
“It’s been a wonderful year, and now we have qualified for the World Cup. We have made the whole nation proud of us and that’s what we wanted to do. We’ve got an exciting team with some good young players. Come Russia, we will be ready to go.”